Pumps

4 Reasons To Pass on Pumps for Sneakers

There’s no doubt that a great pair of heels on the right women exudes effortless femininity: they tone our legs, add a little oomph to our backsides, make us stand tall, and give us a sexy strut that can’t be rivaled. But who’s to say that such confidence should only be ignited when five-inch pumps are involved? Sure, we settle for stylish boots and comfy flats on our off days, but what about a hot pair of sneakers? Many fashion fanatics, especially after their teen years, turn their noses up at the thought of rocking some sneaks. But with all the stylish options at our disposal these days, there’s no reason to reserve them exclusively for gym days or grocery shopping. Every once in a while, you’ve gotta kick off the fancy footwork and lace-up in style.

Here’s a few reasons why women should opt for sneakers more often:

Comfort
Between all the heels, platforms, arches, etc., our poor feet get tired. Whether or not you’re comfortable sporting stilettos on a daily basis, everyday wear can actually have long-term impacts on your body. Lower back pains, posture problems, and nerve damage, for example, are all common complaints of long-time heel fanatics. With the right sneaker, such worries are eliminated. Your body is supported by a flat, cushioned, and comfy shoe that allows for relaxation and ease-of-wear.

Practicality
With a pair of killer sneakers, you can get the job (whatever the “job” may be) done! There are no worries of your instep being strained or your baby-toe crying out for dear help. No need for bandaging the back of your heels, or inserting additional gel insoles for comfort. No desperately hoping that you remembered your flats, and making sure that the back-up pair coordinates with your outfit just as much as the original pair. You don’t think twice when the task at hand calls for being on your feet for extensive periods of time, or while walking long distances. And, if by chance something pops off somewhere out there in the world, you’re fully equipped to make a mad dash—pronto!

Confidence
It’s already expected that we’ll be sexy and girly in high heels—too easy. But wearing sneakers requires an extra air of confidence and assuredness in oneself that only certain women possess. They say that you’re down-to-earth, don’t take yourself too seriously, and are ready for whatever is being thrown at you! All great traits to have. And though they may require a bit more effort to make the look feminine and appropriate for the occasion, sneakers allow you to break free from the typical feminine standard, let go, and live a little.

Style
No longer are tennis shoes actually designed for the sole purpose of athletics—they’re just as much a fashion statement as your ballerina flat, slouch boot, or stiletto. Sneakers come in every shape, style, material, color, and price point under the rainbow—so your wardrobe options are unlimited. Sporty girls may opt for the functional Air Max 95, while minimalist chicks may prefer the classic Chuck Taylor Low. Trendy gals may pick up the latest colorful pair of Nike Blazers, and label-loving fashion enthusiasts may save up for a pair of Louboutin studded high tops. Whatever your personal style may be, there’s a sneaker (or two, or three) to complete the look!

- Chelsea Smith

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Kush & Splendor: 5 CBD Beauty Products That’ll Take Your Self-Care Routine From 0 To 100

Lotions, creams, and salves—oh my! With cannabidiol (CBD) popping up in just about every product you can imagine, the cannabis-infused beauty industry is clearly on the come-up. In fact, analysts predict that the “wellness” movement—as well as the legalization of Mary Jane across the world—will help rake in $25 billion globally in the next 10 years, according to Business Insider. That’s 15 percent of the $167 billion skincare market.

And what better way to up the ante on one’s wellness routine than with all-natural CBD? Just ask Dr. Lana Butner, naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist at NYC’s Modrn Sanctuary, who incorporates CBD in her treatments.

“CBD is a fantastic addition to acupuncture sessions for both its relaxation and anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving effects,” Butner shares with Vixen. “The calming effects of CBD allows for patients to deeply relax into the treatment and really tap into the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest, digestion and muscle repair/regeneration.”

She adds that CBD’s pain-relieving effects are “far-reaching,” from muscular and joint pains to migraines and arthritis—and even IBS and indigestion.

The magic lies in CBD’s ability to impact endocannabinoid receptor activity in our bodies. Without getting too wordy, our bodies come equipped with a system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is the HBIC over our sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response. Also known as cannabidiol, CBD teams up with this system to help reduce inflammation and interact with neurotransmitters. According to Healthline, CBD has also been scientifically shown to impact the brain’s receptors for serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for regulating our mood and social behavior.

All that said, it’s important to note that not all CBD products are created equal. Many brands cashing in on the green beauty wave use hemp seed oil, sometimes referred to as cannabis sativa seed oil, in place of CBD... which doesn’t make them any less great! Hemp seed oil is actually high in antioxidants, amino acids, and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids—all of which are thebomb.com for your skin.

“It’s generally viewed as a superfood and is great for adding nutritional value to your diet,” Ashley Lewis, co-founder of Fleur Marché, told Well and Good last month. “In terms of skin care, it’s known as a powerful moisturizer and skin softener that doesn’t clog pores or contribute to oily skin.”

However, when companies start marketing CBD and hemp oil as one-in-the-same, that’s when things get a bit tricky.

“The biggest issue is that hemp seed oil and CBD are two totally different compounds that come from different parts of the hemp plant, have different makeups, and different benefits,” Lewis added. “Marketing them as the same thing just isn’t accurate and does a disservice to consumers who are expecting certain benefits that they won’t get from hemp seed oil and who are often paying more for what they think is CBD.”

So if you’re looking to benefit from the perks specifically attributed to CBD, make sure you’re reading labels before buying, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Hell, ask for a product’s test results, while you’re at it. It never hurts to be sure.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, are you ready to see what all the hype is about? For this 4/20, we rounded up a few CBD (and hemp!)-infused products to help give your self-care routine a bit of a boost. Looks like your holiday just got that much kushier. You’re welcome!

Note: Data and regulations surrounding CBD and its use are still in development. That said, please don’t take anything written in this post as medical or legal advice, and definitely double check the laws in your state. Also, please do your body a favor and hit up your doctor before trying any new supplements. We’re just tryna look out for you. Okay? Okay. Read on.

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Vivica A. Fox Explains Past Hesitance Behind 'Two Can Play That Game' Script

In a new interview with Essence, actress Vivica A. Fox discussed how she initially turned down her role in Two Can Play That Game based on the script. The established entertainer said it's her mission to ensure that black people are positively portrayed onscreen, and noticed the aforementioned film's prose didn't live up to those standards.

"I think the reason why—no I know the reason why—I've been doing this for such a long time is that I fight," Fox said. "When we did Two Can Play That Game, I fought for the way we talked, walked, the way we loved each other." The Set It Off actress continued to state that she consistently declined Two Can Play That Game before signing on to play the lead role. "Because the script, when I first got it, I turned it down three times because it just wasn't a good representation of African-Americans, so I fought them on everything," she noted. "I want to make sure that the images of African-Americans are as positive and as true as they can possibly be."

In 2001, the romantic comedy debuted to fanfare, boasting an all-star cast of Morris Chestnut, Mo'Nique, Anthony Anderson, Bobby Brown, Gabrielle Union, Wendy Raquel Robinson, and more. Directed by Mark Brown (Barbershop, Iverson, How To Be A Player), Fox plays a career driven person named Shante Smith who navigates a curveball when her boyfriend Keith Fenton (Chestnut) cheats on her with a co-worker.

After its release, Two Can Play That Game raked in over $22 million at the box office.

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Actress Gabrielle Union attends the Being Mary Jane premiere, screening, and party on January 9, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for BET)
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BET To Unveil Edible Billboard For 'Being Mary Jane' Wedding Finale

As Being Mary Jane comes to an end, BET is willing to offer fans a taste of what's to come in the series finale.

The network has enlisted the help of Ayesha Curry, celebrity cook and cookbook author, to create an edible billboard that also doubles as a wedding cake. The sweet treat will commemorate Mary Jane's (played by Gabrielle Union) nuptials in the two-hour series finale.

On April 20 from 1:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. at Brooklyn's Atlantic Terminal in New York, fans will be presented with the edible billboard. At the intersection of Ashland Place and Hanson Place, the closer Being Mary Jane enthusiasts get to the billboard the quicker they'll notice that the four-tiered wedding cake is created from individual boxes, each containing a slice of Curry's prized wedding cake.

All fans have to do is pull a box from the billboard, snap a picture for the 'Gram, take a bite and enjoy. Although lovers of the show won't be able to celebrate with Mary Jane herself, biting into a slice of her wedding cake, for free, is the next best thing.

Don't forget to tune into the series finale of Being Mary Jane on Tues. (April 23) at 8/7 c.

Also, check out what's to come on the series of Being Mary Jane below.

Save the date! 👰🏾It'll be worth the wait. Join us for the series finale of #BeingMaryJane TUES APR 23 8/7c only on @BET! pic.twitter.com/jEwkbC71OW

— #BeingMaryJane (@beingmaryjane) March 29, 2019

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